Iraq crisis Current Affairs - 2020

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Meteor missiles: India asks for early delivery from France

India has requested for an early delivery of Meteor air-to-air missiles from France. These missiles will provide India the power to take on US supplied AMRAAM missiles possessed by the Pakistan Air Force.

Highlights

The Meteor missile has a delivery range to take over all the other air forces in the region including China. The missiles were to come by late 2020. However, India is insisting for delivery of at least 10 missiles in advance along with the first set of Rafale fighter jets. The first set of Rafale jets are to arrive in May 2020 after the completion of pilot training in France.

Meteor Missiles

The Meteor missiles are air-to-air missiles with a range of 150 km and no escape zone of 60 km. This no escape zone is the largest in the world according to its manufacturers. These missiles are to be attached to the Rafale jets. With increasing tensions between India and Pakistan, India is requesting for an early delivery.

Operation Chammal

The French Government has invited India to visit the Al Dhafra air base in UAE where the Rafale aircrafts are on active operations. The base is currently executing Operation Chammal.

Operation Chammal is a French Military operation in Syria and Iraq to contain the expansion of Islamic State. The operation also supports Iraq army. The name of the operation comes from the north westerly wind that blows over Persian Gulf and Iraq.

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Turkish Kurds join battle against ISIS

Syrian Kurdish town of Ayn al-Arab which is facing high levels of unrest as they are battling their survival against ISIS militants who have surrounded the town on three sides, the fourth of which lies next to the Turkish border.
The town is seen full of Turkish Kurds who have come to fight and drive back the ISIS. The town is undergoing constant clashes between the People’s Protection Unit and the ISIS fighters. Latest round of ISIS advances in Syria have let the north-central Kurdish area flow into the hands of ISIS who are slowly advancing. The Kurdish leaders have warned of another humanitarian crisis and massacre. The ISIS have completely blockaded the area as many villages have fallen to the ISIS as the Kurdish forces retreated.
The minority Kurds have described it as an existential battle and have described it as a one which is highly important to stop the massacre of 50,000 Kurds who inhabit the area. Many Kurdish fighters are crossing borders to join the fight for existence. The Kurds have refused to move to the refugee camps and want to face and defeat ISIS. In another turn of events, ISIS has released 49 Kurdish hostages taken from Mosul after 3 months of captivity.
Turkey has opened its border with the town to allow people to move to its territory as refugees in the Sanliurfa province.

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